Monday 26 February 2024

Salvation is post-mortal

Salvation is post-mortal: that is to say, the decision to accept Jesus Christ's offer of resurrection to eternal Heavenly life is made after our death. 

(Of course we can decide positively to follow Jesus at any time during this mortal life, but then we can also change our mind at any time; and we change all the time and the world changes - so that can't be final.) 

I realize that I have arrived at this understanding of salvation over the past years, and have not wavered from my conviction; yet I'm not sure that I could retrace the steps of how I arrived at it. 

It may have been through reading the Fourth Gospel repeatedly through 2018; but it may also have been through a process of inferring how God "must" have arranged things such that the scheme of salvation had the best change of achieving its goals in the context of Men as they actually are, and this world as it actually has-been and is. 

At any rate, I find this conviction immensely consoling. No matter how distracting and evil our world becomes, how weak we are as Men, the time of decision will be after all this; will be based on a retrospective of our life and knowledge and choices. 

I also expect that it is in this post-mortal situation when other positive influences may also be brought to bear on our decision about salvation; specifically, it is when love of fellow Men may become effectual: our love for others, and the love others have had for us. 

This because the positive choice of salvation is a choice and commitment to live eternally and wholly by love

It makes the best sense to me that our fullest awareness of the fact of love would come after mortal life is ended, and in retrospect.

In particular, most effectively I suppose, we would then be able to share the experience of any persons (or indeed other non-person living Beings) who love us and whom we love who have already been resurrected. 

I cannot imagine any-thing more positively persuasive than such an experience.

Of course, salvation is always a choice, and may be rejected. 

Is such rejection of salvation permanent? - Well, I can't see that rejection would have to be eternal (and surely God would not want that?). 

Also, there need not be a 'symmetry' between on the one side the ability that we have (since the work of Jesus Christ) to commit eternally (irrevocably) to love; and, on the other side, the capacity to reject love. 

(Indeed, it may be that there is no eternal way that love can be rejected, no way that rejection can be made eternally, permanently, binding.) 

So - the theoretical possibility of salvation may always remain... but only so long as a Being is capable of love; and it may be that the capacity to love may have been absent from eternity, or be destroyed in the course of time. 

But while a constitutional incapacity to love may be inferred from behaviour; it cannot be known directly and with certainty - such is the nature of agency. 

At any rate, it seems clear that anyone who is capable of love and desires salvation can have it - whatever their nature and the circumstances of their past life. The work of Jesus Christ made possible exactly this everlasting state of living-by-love. The Big Question is whether or not a Being actually wants this: wants it enough to make the eternal commitment.


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